Now that we have been in Dubrovnik for two weeks, I am beginning to feel more like a “local” and less like a tourist. I can more easily navigate the city, have found the best route to and from campus, and can even help out lost tourists with directions!
Here are some things I have learned so far:
- Toilets are so weird here. They are oddly shaped and the flush button is weird too! They are much smaller than the US, and the flusher is the entire top of the toilet and you push it into the toilet to flush. Some toilets have two large buttons, one wider than the other for… heavier flushes. When our washer drains, it does so in the toilet… so we get to see all the nasty water come out of our now clean clothes.
- There are no clothes driers. I knew this before I left the states, so this is not as shocking to me. It’s actually kind of pretty to see laundry hanging out to dry. Our balcony came equipped with four lines for drying clothes, and our landlord left us a bunch of clothespins.
- There is no Netflix! We learned this one the hard way… but Netflix “hasn’t come to this country yet”. That is literally what the website says when you type it in.
- Walking and/or using public transportation is actually much more enjoyable than I thought it would be. I have had my own car since I turned 16, and before that my mom or sister would drive me around, so needless to say I have been very spoiled. Before coming I thought I would be most “culture shocked” by not having the convenience of my car, but I have found a lot of peace in walking the city. It is very relaxing to just stroll home. Besides, driving here is insanely scary. So that brings me to the next point…
- The roads here are tiny. I mean tiny. You start walking down a road, and think it is just a walking path. Then a car comes through, and you think it is a one way. But then a car comes from the opposite direction, and you are terrified for your life and both drivers. I haven’t seen any accidents yet, so I guess its normal for them.
- Stairs are everywhere, and I mean everywhere. We walk up hundreds of stairs to get back to the apartment. Like over 500. This is not a place that can accommodate handicapped people at all.
While I have found these things to be the most alarming, I have not really felt homesick or culture shock yet. I do not know if I will experience either, but as of right now, I can say that I am fully immersing myself into the Croatian culture as much as I possibly can!
Until next time, Cheers!